The hockey landscape has shifted. Can Canadians keep up?

In addition to its special coverage of the Olympics, Maclean's magazine examines a new threat to the economic recovery--and why this year's Oscars might surprise

TORONTO, Feb. 25 /CNW/ - Audience shock provokes a distinct and dreadful sequence of sounds and silences. It follows the sonic template of a car crash, and you could hear it during last week's game between Switzerland and Canada, when the Swiss defenseman scored with 10 seconds remaining in the second period. There were screams, followed by a calamitous "Oh!" and then, in the ensuing quiet, random cries like the tinkle of breaking glass.

These Olympics, like others before them, say much about the shifting landscape of hockey. When the NHL first allowed its players to participate in the Olympics in 1998, most assumed that teams with the most and best NHL players would be on an entirely different competitive plane. With European teams gaining momentum, recent events have shown that this prediction is not necessarily accurate.

National Affairs Correspondent Charlie Gillis examines the reasons behind why European teams keep surprising Canada on the international stage. One thing is clear: It's not just our game anymore.

Also this week in Canada's magazine on Canada's Games:

    
    -  Why scrapping Canada's $117-million Own the Podium program is
       shortsighted.
    -  Canada's Sweethearts: Olympic ice dancing champions Tessa Virtue and
       Scott Moir: the inside story on a childhood dream come true.
    -  The risk of aiming high: Will medal counts affect future funding for
       Canadian athletes?
    

Inflation could be a serious threat to the economic recovery

Canada saw a surprise jump in its inflation rate in January. For the average Canadian middle-class household grappling with an era of high unemployment and stagnant wages, the prospect of rising prices over the next few years could amount to another body blow. Good luck trying to negotiate corresponding wage increases with employers who are still nursing badly wounded balance sheets. At the same time, a rapid rise in interest rates to thwart inflation could derail the current recovery, sending people right back to the unemployment line.

Will this year's Oscar winners surprise?

Oscar night just might be less predictable this year with the Academy's changes to the voting process.

About Maclean's:

Maclean's is Canada's only national weekly current affairs magazine. Maclean's enlightens, engages and entertains 2.4 million readers with strong investigative reporting and exclusive stories from leading journalists in the fields of international affairs, social issues, national politics, business and culture. Visit www.macleans.ca.

SOURCE Maclean's

For further information: For further information: or to set up interviews: Louise Leger, louise.leger@rci.rogers.com, (416) 764-4125

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